Baptisms, Births and Binge Eating Chocolate
There is basically 1 month until my favourite time of the year: The Festival of Easter.
I know there is a strong religious axis to Easter (George Pell is not exactly helping with gaining respect in this area of the church is he with this incredibly sad situation) and I like to think we teach our kids basic Christian values. Two of my 3 kids are Catholic. My husband is Catholic. I am not. And my 3rd child is going to stay on team Mum. Things went a little pear shaped at child number 2’s christening when the priest performed a surprise exorcism. I kid you not.
My husband’s side of the family are staunch Irish Catholic. My side of the family were raised believing Sundays are for the beach. They were more staunch life -savers. So you can imagine the look of horror and bewilderment from my wayward clan when the eccentric priest held up my nude 4 month old baby during a bizarre rant mirroring the scenes from The Lion King when Rafiki held up Simba to present him as king. A full speech followed on expelling the demons from my plump little innocent baby. I now wish I had intervened but I stood up on that church stage so stunned I could only stand there wondering if this is what happens during a traditional christening.
It was at the party afterwards when even the hard core Catholics were saying it was indeed a bit of a crazy christening. I often think that perhaps my 2nd child will be protected in life with any luck from any evil. But I do truly get really excited about Easter because it means cooler weather and chocolate and family time. It means fabulous seafood and books and flannelette pyjamas.
I am not sure my reality will live up to the fantasies in my mind about my Martha Stewart inspired Easter but in my head I picture us all wearing matching pyjamas and pigging out on Cadbury Cream Eggs as we watch Hop on television. My mother in law (the Irish Catholic one) is the most generous woman on the planet and always sends pyjamas to us at Easter. Betty did this for her kids and now does it for her grand kids. I have no doubt we will take on the pyjama buying duties one day and carry on with this gorgeous tradition. We always look forward to Betty’s fat package arriving in the post busting with the goodies inside. I love a tradition.
We never had many growing up except that Sunday was for the beach. I think that is why I am a bandit for taking on any form of family bonding or tradition. Easter also means we buy each child a new book. And we have hot cross buns on Easter morning. But our traditions go beyond that as we cook pancakes on a Sunday morning and listen to The Beatles. We try to go to the beach for sunset and sit down to a roast Sunday nights. I let the kids have their birthday off school. We always watch ‘Elf’ at Christmas and serve Dad breaky in bed on Father’s Day.
We have a secret family hand shake and every night we lie in bed with each child to talk about the day. It is tradition that brings me the biggest sense of family and a feeling of being content. Traditions add to the rhythm and seasonality of life and add some stability to the busy days we all lead. It gives us all something to look forward to and to anchor us in our little family when there may be tough times in the outside world. I hope my kids remember these traditions as a way we nurtured them and their sense of belonging and carry them on with their children. It all sounds very deep all of a sudden. I am the queen of enabling so maybe it is all just an excuse to eat chocolate with my kids and not leave the house this Easter!
– Sami xx